When former music-industry-producer-turned-college-professor Pebo Rodriguez began teaching in 2011, he noticed something he hadn’t before. “Every single student was on their phone—in the hallways, on the stairs,” he recalls. “I even had to fight with them about not using their phones in class.” A couple semesters went by before he started doing some research, and he came to a life-changing realization: smartphone addiction is an epidemic, and the college environment is part of the problem.
Starting in January of 2018, Pebo began conducting workshops on smartphone addiction in community colleges in and around San Diego, where he currently lives and teaches. “The attendance was small at first, but the impact has been tremendous.” That encouraged Pebo to take his workshop game to the next level, so in late 2018, he contacted us about helping him develop the Unplugg 2 Reconnect (U2R) brand.
U2R’s goal is to educate and equip teachers and administrators at the community college level on how to deal with smartphone addiction in the classroom setting. “Community college students have enough problems,” Pebo remarks. “They don’t need addiction on top of that.”
The new U2R brand will be fully and officially launched in early 2018, but the war on addiction in America’s college classrooms has already begun.